George Takei, Patty Duke Star In Social Security Ad

The Social Security Administration wants to boost the speed at which people are signing up online for benefits. So it's featuring a silver-haired celebrity duo in a new public service announcement. George Takei, 73, reprises his television role as Sulu on Star Trek, and he's coached by actress Patty Duke, 64.

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RENEE MONTAGNE, host:

And today's last word in business is warp speed ahead.

The Social Security Administration wants to get more people onboard the idea of signing up for benefits online. So it's hired a famous navigator to star in a public service announcement.

(Soundbite of beep)

Mr. GEORGE TAKEI (Actor): Won't filing for Social Security benefits online be confusing?

MONTAGNE: That would be George Takei, better known as Hikaru Sulu, the helmsman of the USS Enterprise on the TV show "Star Trek." He's coached in the ad by actress Patty Duke.

Ms. PATTY DUKE (Actress): You've navigated through asteroid belts, right?

(Soundbite of beep)

Mr. TAKEI: Oh sure, plenty of times.

Ms DUKE: Well, compared to that, navigating socialsecurity.gov is a snap.

MONTAGNE: And if seniors sail through the process of applying for benefits online, it saves the Social Security Administration money.

(Soundbite of music)

MONTAGNE: And that's the business news on MORNING EDITION, from NPR News. I'm Renee Montagne.

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Correction April 8, 2011

An earlier version of this item incorrectly reported that the Social Security Administration had hired George Takei and Patty Duke for the public service announcement. Actually, they volunteered.

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